Thursday, May 28, 2015

Top Defence Management

The present system of Defence Management is centered round the Defence 
 Secretary, who is entrusted with the responsibility for the defence of India, as per the Government's Rules of Business. In the case of Defence Secretary, the Responsibility and Accountability do not seem to be linked together.

No Defence Secretary has ever been held accountable: 1962 war with China, Kargil Episode, Disparity in defence preparedness between China and India or Lack of suitable & adequate Field Armour, Aging Fighter Squadrons and Naval Fleet.

Post of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS)

The Naresh Chandra Task Force had recommended creating an equivalent of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) in 2012 and the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh endorsed it. But the file remains buried in the South Block.

The Civil Service (Bureaucracy), which is the biggest impediment for Defence Reforms, may not permit any reform to go through smoothly, as it may diminish its status and importance in the Civil- Military Calculus.

One Rank One Pension (OROP)

OROP for ex servicemen, was acceded to by the UPA government, echoed by the NDA, and announced again by the new regime after its ascension to power. Prime Minister Modi declared emotionally on his visit to the troops in Siachen that "One Rank One Pension has been fulfilled". Even one year after NDA Govt. OROP remains a pipe-dream – Thanks to the strangle hold of Civil Bureaucracy over (non) implementation of policy decisions.

As far back as 2003, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence recommended One Rank One Pension, calling it "a debt" the Nation had to pay. It is a debt, the NDA Government must honour without any Ifs & Buts. Not to do so forthwith is an act of dishonour.

Disparities between Civil Bureaucrats Vs Service Officers

A Joint Secretary, with nineteen years of professional experience, is deemed the equivalent of a Major-General, who not only has many more years of service but has commanded men and materiel, made life-and-death decisions and protected our nation. Only less than 1% of Army officers ever attain Major General Rank, while almost all IAS Officers are likely to become Joint Secretaries by time scale. Lot more pensions are paid to Joint Secretaries than Major-Generals, yet there there is quibbling about the cost of Defence Pensions.

Supremacy of Democratic Civilian Govt OK, but Not ----

The supremacy of Democratic Civilian Government over Defence Services is a Must, but the Arrogance and Tyranny of Civil Bureaucracy cannot be tolerated and not desirable in the name of Govt.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Stop Criminal Act of Draining out Hussain Sagar Waters

Hussein Sagar, a picturesque water body in Twin Cities of Hyderabad & 
 Secunderabad, was originally constructed in a natural depression at about 513 m above MSL, in the year 1561. It was a fresh water lake and used as drinking water source for Hyderabad from 1860s to 1930s.
As the City of Hyderabad developed and the population got multiplied putting 

heavy pressure on urban land, the water spread area has shrunk drastically 

making way for various so called development activities around it. In the 

process of urbanization and heavy industrialization, the lake also got heavily 

polluted by untreated / under-treated Domestic Sewage and Industrial 

Effluents discharged in the catchment of the inlet channels. But it has 

continued to be an Ecological and Heritage Asset of the City.

But unfortunately, with or without the connivance of the concerned Govt 

Agencies the masquerading of real estate business, in and around Hussein 

Sagar, still goes on, in spite of the Court Orders, Master Plan, Water, Land 

and Trees Act, 2002 and many other Regulations. The reason is simple. 

Urban Land has become a profitable Commodity. The prime land right in the 

heart of the city has become an Attractive, Low Risk and High Profit Real 

Estate Business with quick money, and Hussein Sagar is no body’s baby.

The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) and other concerned 

agencies had undertaken to discharge highly Polluted Waters of Hussain 

Sagar down stream into Musi River, by fully opening the Sluices and breaking 

Surplus Weirs from mid April, in the name of carrying out their repairs. This is 

nothing but clever camouflage of clandestine implementation of the publicly 

announced intention of Chief Minister of Telangana for de-watering and 

de-silting of Hussain Sagar in the name of cleansing it.

NGT SZ, in its order 1 st May, having some reasonable doubt about the 

conduct of the Respondents, as to whether they have conducted any detailed 

scientific study about the scheme of De-watering, prevented them from further 

de-watering of Hussain Sagar & transferring to any other water bodies 

pending further orders of the Tribunal.

But the concerned State Agencies, continued to discharge polluted waters 

from Hussain Sagar down stream into Musi River, in utter contempt to NGT 

Directive and in utter disregard to the provisions of Section 24 of Water Act, 

1974. In addition they approached Hyderabad High Court on 7 th May, in 

violation of Section 22 of NGT Act 2010, and obtained stay order against NGT 

Directive, even before the Petitioner before NGT was informed.

All these are speaking facts of the malformed intentions behind the Criminal 

Act of the State Administration to De-water Hussain Sagar, before onset of 

monsoon, which harms Environment and Quality of Life of People in Twin 

Cities and down stream of Musi River, apart from loosing the Ecological and 

Heritage Asset.